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Nissan to offer entry level Leaf

Japanese marque pins hope for tumbling sales on budget variant

Published: October 7, 2012, 1:00 AM

2012 nissan leaf

Automotive News says Nissan is planning to bolster sagging sales of its all-electric Leaf by rolling out a budget edition next year.

With its only source attributed as "two people familiar with the plan," the industry insider mag said the cheaper variant would be added as part of a 2013 model facelift. Automotive News said a spokesman for Nissan Americans had declined comment.

The entry-level iteration would be positioned below the two specs currently offered, which list for $38,395 and $39,995, the latter inclusive of a photovoltaic solar panel rear spoiler and rear-view monitor.

Nissan's Leaf sales have been far off expectations, with only 5,212 sold in the U.S. through September and a 20,000-unit goal; sales were off signicantly year over year too. General Motors, meanwhile, tripled sales of its extended-range hybrid Chevy Volt in the U.S. in September, according to Forbes.